Misogyny? Baloney!


After Donald Trump won the White House in November, we had a spate of editorial commentaries purporting to explain the role that gender played in Hillary Clinton’s defeat. For some pundits, the answer was obvious: this country is as irredeemably sexist as it is racist.

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Anglo-American Speechwriting


Logos (logic) and pathos (emotion) are self-explanatory, but ethos is more elusive. Essentially, ethos means building a bond with the audience, so that the audience will trust the speaker and be receptive to the speaker’s message.

To illustrate, I gave two particularly appropriate examples, about 60 years apart, of how two very different British prime ministers used ethos when they addressed a joint session of the U.S. Congress.”


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“Exit Tsar”


March 15 marks the 100th anniversary of the abdication of Tsar Nicholas II of Russia.The milestone has attracted little notice. It is the opinion of most historians that Nicholas was a failure: feckless, dimwitted, reactionary—and henpecked to boot. But as Robert Massie makes clear in his admirable biography, Nicholas and Alexandra, the real Nicholas was more complex, more human and more interesting than the caricature.

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Meryl the Martyr?


Ms. Streep began her Golden Globes speech by announcing that she had lost her mind. Speaking at the Human Rights Campaign fundraising gala, she revealed that she has still not got it back.

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Donald Trump, You’re No Harry Truman!


President Trump’s tweet bashing Nordstrom’s for dropping his daughter Ivanka’s line of products has been compared to the vitriolic 1950 letter that President Harry Truman sent to the music critic who panned his daughter Margaret’s singing. The comparison fails on at least two grounds.

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